After a terrific day of cricket on Sunday against Sedbergh and Merchiston, and with two wins already under the belt, the 1stXI have displayed real promise and determination so far this season, working hard as a unit with everybody contributing which is the sign of a good team. The winter nets have certainly helped and our bowling, in particular, has been impressive, with everyone able to bowl straight and trouble the opposition batsmen. Once again, the team was rotated to give opportunities for others to perform, and we headed down to Melrose full of confidence.
Winning the toss once again, we chose to bat and after the early loss of Rory and Marcus, Harry and Leonardo batted very well together, running well between the wickets, putting pressure on the fielders and playing watchfully when necessary. They put on over 50 together and it was ideal platform for our innings; Leo hit the ball hard, and although he played across the line a few times, showed excellent technique which should give him the confidence to go on and score more runs later in the season. Harry played with great patience and he batted right the way through the innings, only to fall in the final over for a very well made 59, his first half century of the season; it was an excellent knock, fully of delicious drives and pulls, yet always happy to block the good ball.
I was also impressed with Findlay’s contribution late on, as he and Harry pushed the score over 120 in our 20 overs, and he deserves to move up the order next week. There were two unlucky run outs, going for the second run with a direct hit from the boundary – I never worry about these as 8/10 you get home. With slow outfields, the importance of running hard is so important. 126-7 would take some chasing, I felt.
That said, the St Mary’s batsmen set about their task very well and although they were always behind the rate and needed 26 from the final over to win, some sloppy fielding and the occasional one ball meant they never gave up hope. VJ bowled well, as did Todd, but Nico and Freddie showed nerves of steel as they bowled at the death with the St Mary’s boys desperate to hit boundaries. There were three run outs which was excellent and Findlay took a good catch to dismiss their best player second ball.
So all in all, an excellent win and I was pleased, once again, with the way we got through the overs, bowled accurately and did not give the opposition much to hit. Well done, boys!